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After getting in an accident, how long can I wait to make a claim?
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After getting in an accident, how long can I wait to make a claim?

I got into a car accident which will go down at my fault. There were only scratches to the other car, but my car will need some body work. I have a connection to a body shop that will do the job for me at a good price so I can get a quote by tomorrow afternoon. If it's over $1000, I might as well report it to my insurance and pay my $500 deductible, otherwise I can just pay out of pocket to avoid my premium going up. The other party's car looks fine except for the scratches. They said they won't even get it fixed if that's all it comes down to. I also have a police report.

Should I make a claim with my insurance company right away in case they try asking for high repair costs, or should I just wait it out and file a claim later only if need to?
Additional Details
Also, I did not get a ticket for a moving violation.


2010-04-09 06:04:25 +0000
It isn't 100% sure that your insurance will go up if you don't file a claim and the other party doesn't either. However, you might want to determine exactly how much it will cost to have your vehicle repaired before doing anything else. If the cost is within your ability to pay by yourself then not making a claim will certainly save a hit on your insurance for the claim. If the accident was your fault and you received a citation for causing the accident then the insurance company will eventually become aware of it and you will quite possibly receive a nice letter from them informing you of their knowledge of the incident.

2010-04-09 05:42:10 +0000
Your premiums are going up anyway. You filed a police report and the insurance company will find out. Now you have an accident on your record and it doesn't matter how much the insurance company pays.


2010-04-09 07:16:11 +0000
Usually RIGHT AWAY but if like you say the other party might not make a claim the wait.. Id wait and see if they claim it.. If not dont claim nothing. If they do then claim your car to and payt the deductable theres no reason for you to pay out of pocket for your car if the other party already claimed theres. And if its your fault 4sure then dont listen to people saying call the cops. DO NOT MAKE A POLICE REPORT.. GOODLUCK

2010-04-09 06:00:22 +0000
donut worry hp all is not lost !! hang in there!!! take the car to three other shops get estimates, keep your connection out of it for now. you are entitled by law to have the check mailed to you. this is your right, if you want to expedite the claim a little so the check gets there faster, call the insurance agent in your area, and find out which body shops they like to use. (usually there are two or three body shops the insurance company trusts, and they will approve these estimates no questions asked,) this is what I do too. !!! the insurance company tries to send the claim check to a body shop, because they get ten percent off. INFORM THE AGENT, YOU WANT THE CHECK SENT DIRECTLY TO YOU, THEN go where you want once the check is in your hand, it is yours to do with as you please. glad no one was hurt, cars we can fix, humans are harder to fix god bless good luck!!!

2010-04-09 13:37:26 +0000
Always......... notify your insurance company about any accident you are involved in regardless of who you may think is at "fault". (Insurance companies are the only ones who can determine fault for crash repairs, not me not you, not even the police)
NEVER......... settle on your own. What would you do if, after giving the other party some money, they found hidden damage on their car and came back to you with their hand held out for more money? What about if later, they decided they suffered a back injury?
DO NOT.... worry about a possible rate increase. That is the very last thing to worry about.

WHEN you have insurance, Use it !

2010-04-09 10:22:35 +0000
If you are responsible for damages to another vehicle, your best bet for sure is to let your insurance take care of them. You can settle out of pocket, but you're setting yourself up for a world of trouble. The other party may be acting nice today, but tomorrow could be a whole other story. They could suddenly start having 'injuries' and you would be responsible for any medical bills. You are also required by your insurance company to report this to them.

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